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How to hire the right wedding band

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How to hire the right wedding band

Choosing the right band for your wedding is a crucial part of the planning process. However, it can be pretty tricky to narrow down! Wedding entertainment can make or break your reception, with a fantastic event sticking in your guests’ memories for years to come. In this blog we’ll be offering our top tips for booking the perfect wedding band.

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Book well in advance 

Quality wedding bands are often booked 12-18 months in advance, so it’s wise to narrow down your options and book the band you want at least a year ahead of the date where possible. If you have a specific band in mind, you don’t want to be let down by the act being unavailable on your special day. This might seem a little over-zealous, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. The day of the week your wedding falls on plays a part here – Saturdays, naturally, are the most popular so if you’ve gone for a wedding on a different day, you can afford to leave it a little longer before booking. 

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Consider the venue

It’s crucial to consider the practicality of your venue when booking a band. It’s important to check that your chosen venue has the correct provisions for live music, considering the following questions: “Where will the band set up?”; “Do you have any sound restrictions?” and “What time is the curfew?”. Be sensible with your decisions – if you’re looking at a particularly small venue, an 11-piece band might not be the best idea! What’s more, if your venue has strict sound restrictions, a loud rock band might be cause some problems. While professional artists are adept at managing whatever situation they end up in, it’s best to be considerate ahead of time to avoid any potential issues on the day that may dampen the mood.

wedding-band-tilstone

Think about your audience

The question here is whether you go for the crowd-pleasing angle, or whether you follow the mantra “It’s my day, I’ll do what I like”. Chances are your wedding will be a family gathering, with a wide potential age range. With this in mind, it’s best to pick a band who will play music that everyone (or most people) will know – or at least be able to dance to! A traditional wedding band or a motown/soul act is a sensible choice. You could always showcase your personality by requesting certain songs – if you and your partner (and your friends) share similar music choices, you could have a half hour devoted to a specific genre. With that in mind…

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Pick a playlist – but trust the band

An important – and fun! – part of booking your wedding band is the playlist. Before sitting down with the band to discuss the details, make a list of any songs you want including on the day. The band should provide you with a list of what they play, and if there’s anything you want that’s not on the list, give them plenty of time to prepare and learn (if possible) the new songs. Making a list of do-not-plays is also crucial, if there are any songs that hold bad memories! Make sure you go confirm a rough playlist ahead of the big day, but keep in mind that they might use artistic licence to manage the dance floor. 

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Find out how long it takes for the band to set up

Make sure you know how long it takes your band to set up, and ensure the venue is ready for them to arrive, unload their gear and perform sufficient sound-checks. There’s nothing worse than a band having to rush through a sound-check – you’re bound to suffer sound issues throughout the night. Tell the band what time you want them to start, and give them plenty of time to plan their preparations. If you let the band know your timings – eg. the meal, first dance etc., they can work their set times around these key moments.

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Go and see the band live before you book

This is a pro tip. If the band you’re after plays at gigs that aren’t weddings, take the opportunity to go and see them in action if you haven’t already. This gives you a great chance to meet the band, check out their stage presence and – most importantly – find out if they’re any good! You’ll want to get on with the band, so scoping them out and having a friendly chat can see if you’re a good match. They’re sure to appreciate the effort, too.

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Consider a package for better value

If you want entertainment throughout the day, choosing a band that offers more than one service can save you money. For example, you might want an acoustic act during the wedding breakfast or drinks reception, a live band in the evening followed by a DJ into the night. Having chilled music while the photos are taking place can add a nice touch to your day. It could be better value to book out a full day package like this, and you’ll also only have to deal with one supplier – saving further headaches. 

If you are recently engaged and would like to book a viewing of our completely exclusive wedding venue, drop us an email to enquiries@tilstonehouse.com or call us on 07833253416. Alternatively, you can find us on Facebook or Instagram.